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Message-Id: <199701261826.NAA19688@hermes.iupui.edu>
Sender: o-imap@chumbly.math.missouri.edu
Date: Fri, 24 Jan 97 15:55:39 CST
From: Arm The Spirit <ats@locust.cic.net>
Subject: S. Korea: Hanchongryon Statement On The Yonsei Resistance
Article: 4461

http://www.kimsoft.com/hanchon/nb2.htm (in Korean)

Hanchongryon Statement On Kim Young Sam Government’s Violent Suppression

From Hanchongryon (South Korean Federation of University Student Councils), [24 January 1997]

First of all, we sincerely apologize—although the current situation was caused by Kim Young Sam’s government—to the nation, our parents, our teachers, and our fellow students of the Yonsei University for the concerns and fears caused by our recent moves. We solemnly promise that from now on we shall seek broader support and guidance from the people for our student movements. We thank again our fellow students and the faculty of the Yonsei University for their support.

Kim Young Sam’s government has labeled us rioters and Communists and brutally suppressed the peaceful gatherings, organized by Hanchonryon, of the 7th Pan-National Rally whose purpose was to celebrate Liberation Day (August 15) and to promote peace and the grand unity of our nation. Kim Young Sam’s government has engaged in false propaganda, calling us the enemy, and employed unprecedented violent forces against us.

We intended to hold our meetings legally and peacefully, and thus had petitioned the Unification Ministry for permission and requested a meeting with its Minister—to no avail. Kim Young Sam’s government forbids any reunification movement by the people.

We believe that our student movements for the reunification of our country are proper and justified in order to remedy the grave national loss and to reduce the threats of war in our country, divided and separated for over a half century now.

We shall work harder to keep alive the aspirations of our people for independence and reunification—defended with the lives of so many patriots in the past.

Kim Young Sam has exceeded the savagery of Korea’s past military dictators in committing murders and brutal repression of the people. Kim had the August 15 Liberation Pan-National Rally site completely surrounded and blocked. His police rolled down rocks from the surrounding hills, deployed nearly 10 helicopters and a police force some 50 to 60 times the number of the students at the meeting, and used various chemical weapons in a frantic effort to disrupt our peaceful gathering.

He mobilized the maritime police units to harass the students who had escaped to Oksan. These actions are tantamount to a war waged by the government against the people. The police started several fires in Oksan, torched the lecture halls, and dropped commandos from helicopters.

In the process, many of our fellow students, camped out in lecture rooms, faced death through suffocation by the smoke and teargas. One student nearly died by jumping to a mattress from a high floor. Even now we do not know the precise number of our fellow students under arrest or injured. We estimate that about 3,500 to 4,000 students were arrested and more than 3,000 injured.

Our peaceful celebration of the August 15th Liberation has turned into another Kwangju Massacre of May 18, 1980. We demand that Kim Young Sam issue a public apology for his actions and voluntarily resign from his office&*#8212;otherwise, we will drive him off the seat of power.

We demand punishment of Kim Young Sam’s henchmen Lee Su Sung (Prime Minister) and Pak Il Dung (Police Chief) and we will not cease our fight against them. In particular, the one million members of Hanchongryon shall never forgive Police Chief Pak Il Dung for his threat to use deadly weapons against us.

Hanchongryon has won a victory once again. Until the very moment of our arrest, we shouted loudly and proudly for the reunification of our country and risked our lives to help our leaders—the Hanchongryon Chairman and the Fatherland Reunification Association Chairman, as well as other key leaders&*#8212;to escape.

Our lonely and arduous struggle at Yonsei University will soon unite all patriots into a united common front; it has dealt a severe blow to Kim Young Sam, who is in a political crisis, and forced him to reveal his true colors of a tyrant to the whole nation. Many of our fellow students are incarcerated but they will carry on their patriotic struggle even while detained in police stations and prisons. Soon, tens of thousands of our fellow students will join our ranks in our struggle to replace the present government with a truly democratic government.

Hanchongryon will fight on under the leadership of our Chairman, Hyong Hu, as follows:

(a) Every Saturday, starting at 5 PM, we will conduct anti-Kim Young Sam and anti-terrorism meetings at key locations throughout the country.

(b) We will fight for the release of all participants of the August 15th Pan-National Rally now under arrest, and we will expose the crimes of murder, violence and oppression of the government to the whole nation.

(c) We will organize protest sit-ins at the Myongdon Cathedral until all arrested students are freed.

(d) We will bring the truth to the whole nation through TV, various publications, public organs and discussion groups.

We condemn Joson-ilbo, Dongah-ilbo, MBC, KBS, and SBS for their distorted and inaccurate reporting of our activities. We demand that they issue corrections to their erroneous reports, else we will bring forth all legal and legitimate means and actions to force the news and broadcast services to serve as the eyes and ears of the people instead of being the tools of the government.

Hanchongryon—South Korean Federation of University Student Councils